Professional indemnity insurance is required for all practising architects, either as an individual or through an employer's policy. Practising architects can provide their services as sub-contractors to other architects or through licensed corporations. Either way they need to be covered by professional indemnity insurance, either through the policy of the architect that is contracting their services or their own insurance policy.
Cost of this type of insurance depends on many factors such as the individuals or corporations total turnover, the number of staff you have, and the coverage options you select (e.g. Policy Limit, level of Excess, coverage options you choose etc.)
What is Professional Indemnity Insurance?
Professional indemnity insurance (PI) protects professionals from financial loss following a claim by dissatisfied client, and covers the Architects legal defence costs, and damages payable.
Why do you need Professional Indemnity (PI) Insurance?
Professionals are legally held to a higher degree of different qualifications than ordinary people, known as "experts" in their chosen line of work. As a result, if a client suffers a loss due to a specialist's failure to maintain professionalism, the expert can be sued for violation of professional duty. Loss can be in any form, such as material, financial or even physical.
Some claims can take up to more than five years to settle, resulting in a large legal and potential damages bill. This is where PI insurance comes handy, as defending a claim could be expensive. Even if you successfully defend an action are winning as most courts will only direct the losing party to pay a portion of the others legal costs so you will still be "out of pocket".
Who is a potential candidate for PI insurance?
Mostly lawyers, doctors, accountants, financial advisors and web developers purchase PI policies to protect their business and personal assets. However, PI policies have now been extended across a wide range of industries and are also being bought by professionals or businesses to look after their employees.
While most insurance policies are optional purchases, some PI policies are required by law to be bought by certain professional to run their business.
Most insurers now provide industry specific insurance policies to cater for the nuances of each industry. To this end you should ensure that your PI Insurance is placed with an insurer who provides a specific Architects PI Policy Wording.
Why purchase your Professional Indemnity Insurance through Express Insurance?
Our streamlined quoting system means we can go to market quickly to seek out the most appropriate insurance deal. Our PI specialists have relationships with all PI Insurers in the market and will negotiate the most suitable cover and cost effective premium for you. We can also provide quotations and arrange your Public Liability Insurance, Office Insurance and other Business Insurances you require.
PI premiums are determined by your Turnover and PL Premiums by the number of staff under your employ. All insurers charge a minimum premium in both respects.
We believe we have negotiated highly competitive premiums for both classes of insurance, and will continue to monitor premium levels available in the market to ensure this remains the case.
Premiums vary between states as a result of differing stamp duty rates, however our minimum Total Premiums for Professional Indemnity ($1M cover) start from $983 (incl. GST).
From a compliance perspective and for your own protection you should have a minimum level of Professional Indemnity(PI) insurance. In the event that the services you provide for a client lead to a claim against that client they will generally look at claiming against the provider. PI insurance will protect you in the event that this occurs.
We have designed the Insurance application process so it only takes an average of 5 minutes to complete your application. In most cases your application will be instantly approved online, and you can print your Confirmation of Insurance to prove to clients and prospects that you have the requisite cover in place... It's that easy!! All other documentation, such as your tax invoice, policy schedule and wording will be emailed directly to you for your records.
If the policy can't be issued immediately because we require further information, we will contact you generally on the same day.
Approximately one month prior to the renewal of your policy you will receive a renewal reminder email with a link that will allow you to review your previous years cover and renew the policy even quicker!
* We have minimized the number of referral situations so that most applications will be automatically accepted. However, if you do have prior claims or provide services to high risk industries we will contact you to facilitate completion of your application personally with the Insurer.
Your Insurance policy is arranged by Express Insurance acting as an agent of Berkley Insurance Australia, a registered business name of Berkley Insurance Company (ABN 53 126 559 706) and part of the W.R.Berkley Corporation.
Berkley Insurance Australia underwrites a significant portfolio of general insurance business in Australia. They are fully authorised and regulated by the Australian Prudential Regulator Authority (APRA) which is the prudential regulator of the Australian financial services industry.
The financial strength rating of Berkley Insurance Australia is "A+ (Strong)" by Standard & Poor's.
For each Architects policy completed online we make a donation to Motor Neurone Disease (MND) Australia.
What Is Motor Neurone Disease (MND)
Motor neurone disease is the name given to a group of diseases in which the nerve cells - neurones - controlling the muscles that enable us to move around, speak, breathe and swallow, fail to work normally.
What are the symptoms?
Early symptoms are mild, and include stumbling due to weakness of the leg muscles, difficulty holding objects due to weakness of the hand muscles, slurring of speech or swallowing difficulties due to weakness of the tongue and throat muscles.
How is MND diagnosed?
Many other conditions can mimic motor neurone disease early in the disease. Diagnosis requires an expert neurological opinion and often a series of detailed investigations.
What remains unaffected?
In the majority of cases the intellect and memory are not affected, nor are the senses of sight, hearing, taste, smell and touch. The bowels and bladder are not affected by the disease, although diet and exercise should be carefully monitored. In the PLS (Primary Lateral Sclerosis) form of MND some people suffer from urinary urgency.
Is there a cure or treatment for MND?
At present there is no cure, but coordinated research is being carried out across the world and encouraging progress is being made.
What can be done?
Support people include family, friends, general practitioners, neurologists, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, speech pathologists, psychologists, dieticians, home care nurses, social workers, palliative care workers, community care services and MND Associations in each state and territory.
Where can I find further information?
Information about hereditary factors, different forms of MND, as well as answers to a range of frequently asked questions, is available from the Motor Neurone Disease Association in your state, or from your neurologist.
We will work with you to ensure that claims are handled in a professional manner and that you get a fair outcome from the Insurer. The first step is to lodge your claim as outlined below.